heavy metal

Draconian Bio

Band members
Anders Jacobsson - vocals Lisa Johansson - vocals Johan Ericson - lead and rhythm guitars Magnus Bergström - lead and rhythm guitars Jesper Stolpe - bass guitar Andreas Karlsson - synthesizer and programming Jerry Torstensson - drums


The beginning of Sweden's DRACONIAN can be traced back to May 1994, when Johan Ericson (drums, vocals), Andy Hindenäs (guitars) and Jesper Stolpe (bass, vocals) joined forces as KERBEROS, a melodic heavy/death metal ensemble with black metal influences. Seven months later, lead vocalist and poet Anders Jacobsson joined the band, which then changed its name to what it is today.

Over the next months, DRACONIAN worked diligently on new material that eventually found its way to their first demo recorded in Studio Källgren on 27 Oct 1995, exactly one week of their live debut. With the help of Jessica Eriksson (flute, vocals), Susanne Arvidsson (vocals, keyboard) and Andreas Haag (responsible for the intro "My Nemesis") Shades of a Lost Moon was created. However, it was not made public until February 1996, as Magnus "Bergis" Bergström (guitars), a longtime friend of the band, joined DRACONIAN. Shades of a Lost Moon received excellent reviews worldwide, prompting the interest of several labels. However, no contract materialized and at the end of January 1997, DRACONIAN recorded their second demo, In Glorious Victory. Unfortunately, the band quickly grew discontent with the sound quality of the recording and decided not to release it. The months that followed were less productive for DRACONIAN, as two of its members completed their military service. Nevertheless, rehearsals and new composition were still a part of the band's agenda. The new material called for yet another addition to the band. Keyboardist Andreas Karlsson joined them, taking Susanne Arvidsson's place, who was forced to leave the band for personal reasons. It soon became clear that the members of DRACONIAN had conquered their niche, producing an atmospheric, melodic, and emotive type of gothic metal with a flair all its own.

In 1998 and 1999 DRACONIAN headed for the stage. The positive feedback convinced them that it was again time to tackle the studio. In early August 1999, DRACONIAN entered Studio Kuling to record The Closed Eye of Paradise, an album that dealt with the mystical dark theme of Lucifer and his fallen angels, the true face of God, and the forthcoming battle. On it, Susanne Arvidsson made guest vocal appearances. Unfortunately, the recording, suffering from a bad production, was again not up to DRACONIAN's high standards. The band thus opted to attempt some polishing before its official release. During the months of May and June 2000, Andreas Karlsson, Anders Jacobsson, and Johan Ericson were dedicated to improve the quality of the demo. New melodies were applied, as well as effects, which had erroneously been left out in the studio. The effort paid off, and the demo was finally released.

DRACONIAN now concentrated on creating something new. Their sound became slower, darker, and doomier. The material that ensued guided DRACONIAN in a different direction. Their 2-track promo Frozen Features was made available on the Internet, as well as in CD format. Shortly after recording Frozen Features, Andy Hindenäs took a sabbatical from the band. He was replaced by Johan, who left the drumming responsibilities to Jerry Torstensson. While the band was experiencing line up changes, their self-produced demo was causing quite a stir among critics and fans of the gothic metal genre. A final demo was recorded in the summer of 2002 featuring the vocal talents of Lisa Johansson and for the last time, the skill of Jesper Stolpe on bass, who opted to leave the band to pursue other ventures. Stolpe was replaced by longtime friend and supporter, Thomas Jäger. Dark Oceans We Cry paved the final way for DRACONIAN out of the unknown and into the limelight. The demo received outstanding reviews and the band signed a long-awaited record deal with NAPALM RECORDS.

DRACONIAN recorded their debut album, Where Lovers Mourn in Studio Mega under the supervision of Chris Silver (ex Sundown and Cemetary member) in July 2003. The album was released 21 October. Most songs were re-recordings of earlier works, but 3 tracks showed the new development of this gothic collective.

The following year DRACONIAN hit the road in support of Where Lovers Mourn and also began working on new material: heavier, darker and doomier.

Under the direction of Pelle Saether, DRACONIAN entered Studio Underground in Västerås to record Arcane Rain Fell. The album tells of the fallen angels. It also contain a re-recording of the 15 minute epic Death, Come Near Me, DRACONIAN'S most popular song to date, and a guest appearance from Ryan Henry of the American Doom/Death band NECARE.

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